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Abc for dance's Blog (40)

supporting leg exercises - part 2

One of the problems I see a lot with my students is the inability to understand when they are "sitting in their hip", or if they do realize it, they aren't sure how to correct it.  For a lot of dancers, sitting in the supporting side hip happens when they are concentrating on a combination, fatigued, or trying to keep their hips square (but trying the wrong thing).

If students develop a strong supporting side and are working on it consistently, muscle memory will often kick in to help…

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Added by abc for dance on September 10, 2017 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Supporting leg exercises - part 1

In the summer, i'm often fortunate to have some small classes with students who are open minded about exploring a dance concept throughout a class and in one of these the focus that evolved was about the concept of the supporting leg and how active it really is when used correctly.  Over a couple of blog posts, I'm going to give some of the exercises I used to help students connect with their standing sides during class.

This series of exercises is done on a foam roller. The…

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Added by abc for dance on September 6, 2017 at 4:11pm — No Comments

Healthy and Affordable Coffee Protein Smoothie

I'm not a huge fan of the taste of coffee, so it really surprised me that I liked the coffee drink that came in one of my juice cleanse orders.  If you are a coffee lover, you might find that you want a stronger coffee flavor in this smoothie.  At the ridiculous prices (and often scary nutritional info) of getting coffee out, I played around with making mine.

The recipe comes in 2 parts - making the cold brew coffee and then making the smoothie itself.  It's written out for a quantity…

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Added by abc for dance on August 20, 2017 at 9:30am — No Comments

the importance of a good starting position

Recently, at a large dance teacher's convention, I was fortunate enough to have time off from teaching to both take classes from other teachers and to observe dancers and teachers in class.  One thing that struck me was the lack of focus on proper alignment in starting positions.  While these often subtle differences don't  usually cause an injury, they do set the body up for less than optimal movement - why would we want to prepare our students for class this way?

Since many warm ups…

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Added by abc for dance on August 16, 2017 at 12:37am — No Comments

Why I Very Rarely "Give Class"

I've been asked before, when can I give a class and I always have to explain that I don't "give class".  It's not because give may imply that there is no charge for this service, because I will often do pro bono work for different organizations.  It's because I choose to teach a class, not…

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Added by abc for dance on July 5, 2017 at 10:30pm — No Comments

Teaching and using sur le cou de pied from the beginning



Sur le cou de pied is a position that I find very helpful for encouraging students to shape their feet correctly for…

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Added by abc for dance on April 6, 2017 at 11:27am — No Comments

Crustless Almond Tart - 3 versions - Great source of healthy fats

This recipe is modified from a NY Times recipe - "Pan Baked Lemon- Almond Tart".  I played around with the recipe trying to figure out how to boost the good fats that our bodies need to recover from dance.  Fats are part of the composition of all cell membranes, so eating better fat choices will help build healthier and more efficient cellular function.  Healthy fats are also important for tendon health.  Free range eggs and grass fed butter will improve the ratio of Omega 3 - Omega 6 fatty…

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Added by abc for dance on January 12, 2017 at 11:00pm — No Comments

Healthy Mac and Cheese Recipe -(Grain free, vegetarian and vegan versions included)

Here's a version of Mac and Cheese that keeps the comfort food aspects in but also improves the nutritional profile so that it can be healthy meal option.  This particular version freezes well, so to save some precious time, make a double or triple batch and freeze in individual glass containers for those times life is too crazy to cook from scratch.



Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

2 cups of butternut squash in approximately 1 inch…

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Added by abc for dance on January 6, 2017 at 7:00pm — No Comments

Deconstructing the Tour Jeté

This post is based on the Progressions for Progress class that I recently taught at the Dance Teacher Summit in NYC and Long Beach.  With the positive feedback from the class, I decided to write this up as a blog post so that I can share it with more people.  The process used here can easily be adapted for all dance steps.  To clarify the step being deconstructed, this link will take you…

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Added by abc for dance on August 10, 2016 at 12:45am — No Comments

Information Overload and Effective Cues and Corrections

I was recently asked to present a few classes at a small conference geared towards hypnotists, not my normal dance, exercise, anatomy type of student to be sure.  During the time spots I wasn't presenting, I was welcome to participate in classes that other people were presenting and these ran the…

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Added by abc for dance on March 17, 2016 at 8:00am — No Comments

Performance Hack #2 - Truly Invisible Straps

Straps can be a problem.  Even though many costumes and undergarments come with adjustable straps now, they aren't really invisible.  The clear plastic straps look shiny on stage and break easily, the "nude" straps don't seem to match anyone's skin tones.  Solution?  Make your own invisible straps.

1.  Take the clear plastic straps that you want to replace and remove the fittings from them.…

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Added by abc for dance on May 26, 2015 at 6:16am — No Comments

Performance Hack #1 - Coloring Pointe Shoes

Need a pair of pink pointe shoes to turn black (or one of many other colors)?  Conventional dye can be tricky as it's quite wet and the shoes can soften too much from it (not ideal if you have your shoes at the perfect broken in level).  Fabric paint is a less than ideal…

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Added by abc for dance on May 23, 2015 at 6:45pm — No Comments

Turning Competition Dance Around

I recently shared an article about a competition routine danced by 8 year old dancers that appeared in a prominent news source.  The article was reflecting on the appropriateness or lack of that was demonstrated in this dance.  I was absolutely floored that within 48 hours the post had reached just under 19,000 people and generated almost 100 likes, comments and shares combined.  It's obviously a hot button topic.  The overwhelming response was that the act was inappropriate for that age…

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Added by abc for dance on April 11, 2015 at 9:40am — No Comments

Wearing Many Hats

Very few of us are just a dancer or just a dance teacher, we are usually trying to juggle many different roles at the same time and it can be challenging.  When I owned my studio I was constantly switching between studio owner, teacher, choreographer, office manager, grant writer, artistic…

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Added by abc for dance on January 18, 2015 at 11:34am — No Comments

Increasing Your Traditional Media Exposure

Keeping your studio or company name in front of the public is a challenge for most dancers.  Paid advertising can be effective, but costly and sometimes it's hard to know how to get exposure otherwise.  

The adage "You don't get something for nothing" is pretty much spot on when you are looking at marketing, but…

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Added by abc for dance on January 10, 2015 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Dancing in Heels

Dancing in heels is nothing new.  Throughout the history of many dance styles heels seem to come in and out of fashion.  Historical pictures have documented dancers in heels going back as far as the middle ages for both male and female dancers for social dances, but it's only been recently where I've seen classes…

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Added by abc for dance on January 3, 2015 at 11:00am — No Comments

Convert Your Leotard - Handy Upcycle Project

What to do when it's 4 degrees out and you have only a pile of camisole leotards?  Convert a camisole leotard into a long sleeve leo by upcycling a sweater that has a pull or run in it.

1.  FInd a sweater you are no longer using as a sweater due to a pull or run in the body (or other reason, like lots of holiday designs on the front).

2.  Carfully remove the sleeve along the seam line at the shoulder.  This works best with a sweater that has normal inset sleeves (the sleeve…

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Added by abc for dance on January 7, 2014 at 10:20pm — No Comments

Shoe Deodorizers - Craft Project

A simple craft that will help absorb odors and moisture from your shoes while helping the shoes to retain their shape.  Please note that a mesh fabric was used for demonstration purposes only.  To avoid dust in your shoes, use a slightly tighter weave fabric - muslin would be a good choice.

 

1.  Cut a rectangle of fabric that is as wide as the inside of your shoe and twice as long as the area you want to cover.  To be effective you want to cover at least the front half of the…

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Added by abc for dance on January 5, 2014 at 10:13am — No Comments

Hip Helpers - A Quick Conditioning Series



The ability to move your thigh freely in your hip socket is crucial for all style of dance.   To be able to do this without pain,…

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Added by abc for dance on December 26, 2013 at 10:00pm — No Comments

Wall Barre Alignment Strengthener

Use your break between classes to improve your alignment and strength with this short workout -

 

Lay on your side with your bottom and shoulders against a wall.  Most people will not have their back all of the way against the wall.  Bend your bottom elbow and allow your head to rest on your arm to help…

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Added by abc for dance on December 22, 2013 at 11:00pm — No Comments

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